Areas of Research and Interest
The Doctor of Ministry Program at Barry University offers you five areas of interest and research. As you progress through the program, you are required to choose a particular area of interest and research in order to more completely relate your study of practical theology to your ministry.
Practical Biblical Theology
The Bible arises from the actual experience of the people of Israel in their relationship to God and from the actual experience of Jesus by his followers as expressing their relationship to God. This area of interest and research emphasizes both the origins of the Bible as the record of people's relationship with God in Israel and through Jesus and how this record affects people today. Here, you will study the Bible to bring guidance to the faith community in their present search for God and to assist the community in its identification of a proper response to the offer of a relationship to God through Jesus.
Practical Systematic/Liturgical Theology
Theology as faith seeking understanding and the lex orandi as the lex credendi (the rule of praying affecting the rule of believing) is part of the experience of God and Church in the Roman Catholic and Protestant Christian communities. If this is your area of interest and research, you will investigate the insights and implications of systematic and liturgical theology for their influence upon the experience of faith and prayer in the contemporary Christian church. Systematic and liturgical theology will be studied to further appreciate and enrich the understanding of the experience of God as it is expressed, especially in the prayer and liturgy of the people of faith as the people of prayer.
Practical Moral Theology
Created in the image of God and redeemed by the sacrifice of Jesus, people are called to life in the Spirit; the practice of this life is the focus of moral theology. In this area of interest and research, you will investigate personal and communal activity and institutional and structural systems that promote or obstruct Christian justice and love. As a practical discipline moral theology demands a critical and faith-filled evaluation of conduct and policy in every area of human involvement; from bioethics to social justice, this study offers its resolutions to the human community for the realization of the reign of God.
Institutional and Military Ministry
Military chaplains and chaplains engaged in similarly institutionalized ministries are confronted with many challenges that are critical to these institutions. This area of interest and research enhances the institution-sponsored certifications and provides opportunities for an advanced focus on the specialized field of ministry. Vital issues arising in the context of institutional life invite critical theological reflection to meet the pastoral needs of minister-leaders and those they serve.
Hispanic/Latina(o) Theology and Ministry
The 2000 Census and its most recent revisions indicate that the Hispanic/Latino(a) population constitutes the largest minority group in the United States; the Regional Offices of Hispanic Ministry estimate that Hispanic/Latinos(as) represent nearly half of the U.S. Catholic community. This area of interest and research articulates the lived experience of a culturally mediated faith and explores U.S. Hispanic/Latino(a) contextual theologies as a framework to analyze issues that arise in Hispanic/Latino(a) communities. As a contextualized study of theology and ministry, an understanding of the experiences of Hispanic/Latino(a) communities is attained.
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